Residents Celebrates 50 Years With Visionary Honorees


This year’s Residents Forward’s gala will be held on March 16 at Leonard’s Palazzo, marking 50 years of improving the quality of life on the Port Washington.

This gala celebrates the new heights Residents will reach in the future as it strives to make Port Washington more vibrant, resilient, sustainable and beautiful. A rallying cry of sorts, “Moving Forward Together” engages families, students and individuals in myriad events and programs that focus on continually improving the community.

This year’s gala honorees, Dan Donatelli, Betsy Liegey and Michelle Shain, were selected based on their myriad efforts that have dramatically benefited the entire peninsula.
Since 1991, Donatelli has been a resident of Port Washington, where he has a private law practice. In addition to his busy professional life, Donatelli served as co-president of Residents for almost 20 years.

He is most proud of Cinema On the Bay and our Model Blocks program, along with his work on the Nassau County Environmental Bond Act of 2006 and 2009. In 2016, he resigned from the Residents’ Board when he was appointed to serve on the town’s Board of Zoning Appeals.

Donatelli is an avid sailor and traveler. He and his wife Lisa, of 30 years, spend a good deal of time on their sailboat “Moondance.”

Betsy Liegey moved to Port 15 years ago, having worked for ad agencies for 25 years. She has created successful and award-winning efforts for such brands as BMW, The New York Times, Macy’s, Hilton and P&G.

Her love for gardening and Port’s beauty led her to join Residents’ board. She helps with environmental education programs and the creation of the Green Team, which acknowledges students for environmental deeds and motivating others to do the same. As Beautification Committee chair and an advocate for reducing litter, she spearheaded Residents’ “Give a Litter Bit” campaign to encourage everyone to keep Port streets clean. She also co-chairs the Mural Project that is transforming blank walls into eye-catching art.
Liegey has also been integral to the evolution of Residents’ mission and branding to align with Port’s current and future needs. She enjoys spending time with husband, John, and boys Jack and Will, along with kayaking, painting and paddle tennis.

A native Long Islander, Michelle Shain has lived in Port Washington for 21 years. Her career began as an art director at a NYC advertising agency specializing in high-end fashion and luxury goods. For nearly 15 years, she worked with writers and clients to create impactful ad campaigns. After her second son was born, Shain began her own graphic design business, Headlights Creative. She has many local clients: Residents, Landmark on Main Street, HEARTS, the Port Washington Public Library and many businesses.

Very proud of Residents’ Mural Project, Shain was instrumental in the design and launch of these murals, which highlight Port’s rich beauty, present and past. Gathering local artists, contractors and community support, the top of Main Street now boasts an artist’s enclave.
An avid tennis player and tap dancer, Shai shares her empty nest with husband Randy while sons Jackson and Dillon are in college.

If you’re considering a sponsorship, placing a journal ad and/or attending Residents Forward’s gala, call Lisa Grossman at 516-767-9151 or email

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Debbie Greco Cohen is the manager of Greco Integrated Communications, serves on the executive board of the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce and is a contributing writer to Port Washington News.


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